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Fall Financial Fitness: The Basic 5 Checklist

As we fall back into financial fitness this month, we’re focusing on ways to get (or stay) on track financially for the rest of the year. This week, we’re going to layout a basic 5-step financial checklist that we believe everyone should use to guide their financial life. If you can’t check them all off, then let’s get to work!

Fall Financial Fitness

For many people, the start of fall corresponds with the day the kids go back to school. But for others, we know what really signals the start of fall: football season! Of course football also brings with it the need to plan for tailgates, time with family & friends around the TV cheering on your favorite teams, and any number of other vital social gatherings. 

Choosing & Paying For College: Things to Consider

For all of you entering college for the first time this month, and for all you seniors leaving high school this spring (including mine!!), this is for you! We know you’re feeling the pressure of not only choosing where you will go to college, but what you’ll pick to major in. These decisions would be daunting at any age, but at 18, well, it’s a lot. I know many of you will say you’ll go to whatever school will have you and give you the best financial package, but let’s take a step back for a moment and talk about a few personal development questions. 

6 Common Questions About Paying for College

When it comes to paying for college, we generally see three distinct points of view from our client families. Some come in and say, “Hey, I paid for my college by working and saving, so my kids should do the same.” Others take a similar approach but offer a reward of some kind, whether help with a down payment on a home or assistance paying for graduate school, once the child has worked his or her way through school. The third approach we see are the parents and grandparents who want to pay for all aspects of their children’s college, either because their parents didn’t or couldn’t pay for theirs and they remember how tough that was, or because their parents did and they want to do the same thing for their kids. 

School Starting & Other Thoughts

Well, the kids are back in school, and I don’t know about you, but as far as I’m concerned, they can stay in school forever. There. I said it. One thing I’ve learned in just the last week since school started is that I love being back in a structured environment. I love being back in my office and not having children call me to ask me when I’m coming home, what’s for lunch, could I drive them over to a friend’s house – none of that is going on anymore.

Market & Housing Update

I know many of you opened your statements on June 30 at the end of the second quarter and probably wished you hadn’t. You may or may not have burned them. That said, July was a good month as equities and bonds recovered from their lows. During this same period of time, we also had a hot inflation number we hadn’t seen since the early ‘80s of 9.1 percent. We also saw the Fed raise rates another .75 percent. 

Fall Finances – Yes, Start Now

It’s that time of year when I’m sure most of you are still enjoying the long days of summer, and any getaways you may have planned for the rest of the summer season. That said, now is a good time to start thinking about your fall budget, especially with costs rising for nearly everything.

From Gambling to Investing

For lots of people, starting out investing in the financial markets feels a lot like gambling. It can be scary for even seasoned investors, but if you don’t know what you’re doing, well, it’s next to impossible to develop a strategy that will work for you long-term. Sure, it can be fun to buy a $5 stock and watch it double to $10, but it could just as easily plummet to $1. Roulette, anyone?

Organizing Your Financial Life

We all know a few of those people who are meticulous about organizing things, right? Some people’s closets are color coordinated, and some people have every box and Rubbermaid bin in their home labeled, categorized and stored in the order of how often they’re needed. Remind you of anyone? The truth is, this makes it easy for these folks to understand what they have, where it is, and what purpose it serves in their home.

Summertime, and the Livin’ Should be Easy!

Despite the rising costs of seemingly everything these days, this is the time of year when those of you who are working are trying to squeeze in trips to the lake, weekend getaways and lazy days at the pool – even if you’re staying a little closer to home this year. This truly is the time of year when people think of spending time together and resting after all the hard work of fall, winter and spring. 

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